And the day began. Switched on the car – no display unit – no airconditioning – then the ultimate- no windows worked. I pushed open my door before we had ‘No doors opening’. Found the windows would open once the engine was switched off, so we opened our windows and drove off into the heat.
Arriving at the Big Banana we decided to park in a shady spot ,and with some trepidation , we closed the windows. We figured if we couldn’t get them to open on our return we would address that problem then.
In keeping with the trip theme I ordered the BIG breakfast and that it was!! In true ‘me’ fashion, our breakfast number was 26 ( to the unwary 2 x 13) and I am a Triskaidekaphobia sufferer 😳 Was kind of fitting to our day’s start.
We wandered around the BIG Banana then returned to the cafe for a frozen choc-coated banana ( with sprinkles). Originally my BIG trip plan hadn’t included the Big Banana. However, on looking at the itinerary Brian suggested stretching the trip to include here – literally for a frozen choc-coated banana- and so it was included.
Entering the car after leaving the cafe, we realised we could still open the car windows by turning the engine on , then off. However, now the brake system light was staying on. We decided ( foolishly some might think, but I know this car well) this was just part of the computer failure as the brakes were working well. This light had come on last time the car had computer issues and that had been confirmed by the repairer at the time. Comfortable with this decision (YOLO) we drove off, hot wind blowing through our open windows taking with it my carefully applied face makeup.
I started to question my decision as we climbed the steep, windy, narrow drive to Sealy Lookout. The drive up saw us on the high side of the mountain but I knew that meant we were to be on the valley side on our drive down. This meant constant questions as to how the brakes felt – just to be sure. The lookout has a BIG lookout – Forest Sky Pier. It has magnificent views over Coffs Harbour. Forest Sky Pier extends twenty-one metres out from the car park and stands fifteen metres above the forest floor. Considering the park is at an elevation of 310 meters you can imagine what looking down is like. Not one for heights I did walk out to admire the view. We had left the car windows open as I was a little worried we may have been tempting fate of reopening them again should we close them.
Back into the extremely hot car. I began to wonder just how long we could survive in a car without air conditioning. Brian reminded me that as kids we only had car windows ( but I wasn’t falling for that because I know our climate is getting hotter). Not letting the inconvenience of this car alter our plans, we drove to Urunga to see the BIG hive.Along the drive we saw the Big Banana hand at a roadside fruit store.
As if things couldn’t get worse, around Nambucca road signs warned us of possible delays of up to 15 minutes due to roadworks. All I could think of was having to sit still in this heat box and so began rationing our water – no guzzling I instructed Brian 🙂 But things were in our favour , when we made it through the Go sign at the end of the traffic line, before the STOP was turned .
On arriving at Port Macquarie we detoured to the Ford service shop. I had been googling and there were suggestions we could disconnect the battery to reset the computer (which is what I was hoping was all we needed). Unfortunately they couldn’t look at our car to disconnect the battery until Friday so we plodded on to our hotel in search of an air conditioned room.
We called the NRMA and he said he’d never seen what was happening in any car before. That’s actually the way my life usually goes. But he wasn’t going to let this car beat him. He had a face that showed determination to beat this car at its game . AND HE DID!!! Turns out the ignition switch is dodgy, so to get everything working we just have to turn the engine on then turn the key back a little and PRESTO. – windows and air conditioning working perfectly.
Not taking any chances we walked to a nearby Thai restaurant for dinner and strolled back to our room via the waterfront of the Hastings River, eating ice cream . Everything was good with the world again. What a BIG day 🙂